Staff and Board
Christopher Borg, Executive Director. Since his arrival in October 2011, Christopher Borg has led the development of a master plan for CMC’s historic Mission District campus doubling its capacity through property acquisition and facilities integration. He has also revamped the school’s core infrastructure and diversified its revenue streams. Prior to joining CMC, Borg was a member of the faculty at Groton School where he created curriculum-based programs in instrumental music and global education in addition to teaching violin, viola, and music theory. He also led that community through the construction of music education and performance facilities. Borg began his musical training in a community music school very similar to CMC in Massachusetts. He holds a graduate degree in viola performance from Northwestern University and a bachelor of arts in music history from Vassar College.
Sonia Caltvedt, Marketing Director. Sonia first heard of Community Music Center while on a walk in her new neighborhood. Hearing a sax player practicing scales, she followed her ears to our Mission District home. She played flute in CMC’s Flamenco-Latin Ensemble, Potingue, for many years before becoming our Marketing Director. Prior to working at CMC, Sonia promoted Fair Trade, natural, and sustainable food at a number of Bay Area non-profits and sustainable businesses. She earned her Bachelor of Arts from McGill University in Art History and Spanish. In her free time, Sonia plays flute in the Brazilian ensembles, Dona Francisca and Onda Brasileira.
Scott Feichter, Mission District Branch Associate Registrar. Currently Scott performs with French baritone Laurent Forgo in his big band and the acoustic band Hit Waves Unplugged. He happened upon Community Music Center in 2012 and was fortunate to be a part of the last years of the Cuban and Flamenco Ensemble with Chus Alonso, performing at his farewell concert as a member of Potingue. Prior to his studies at CMC Scott had been an active presence in the “Gypsy Jazz” scene, which emphasizes the music of Django Reinhardt and the Quintette du Hot Club de France. He studied classical guitar at Indiana University Fort Wayne and jazz guitar at Berklee College of Music in Boston on the road to graduating with a BA in Liberal Arts, minoring in Music, Psychology, and Anthropolgy.
Robin Galas, Staff Accountant. Robin graduated from Mills College with a degree in Studio Art. Over the past 13 years, she has worked with numerous nonprofits in finance and administration. In her spare time she enjoys working on food systems change and is Adjunct Faculty at Foothill College where she teaches healthy cooking and nutrition workshops for low-income families.
Mary Ann Grossman, Development Director. Prior to joining CMC, Mary Ann was Development Director for The Daily Californian, UC Berkeley. Before she moved to the Bay Area in 2013, she transitioned from a career in financial services to private fundraising and community outreach for a number of leading nonprofits, including the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children and the Westchester Institute for Human Development. A graduate of the University of Pittsburgh, majoring in psychology and English, she holds a Masters degree from Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs, and the Russian Institute, She is a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) and is a Certified Fundraising Executive (CFRE). A lifelong piano student, she also studied organ (on scholarship).
Linda Hitchcock, Concert Hall Manager and Sunday Registrar at CMC’s Mission District Branch. Linda has worked as the Manager of the CMC Children’s Chorus, the CMC Orchestra, and the SF Sinfonietta Orchestra. She has also been Production Manager for the Berkeley Symphony, SF Choral Society, and the SF City Chorus. Linda has a Bachelor’s of Science from Empire State College, where she studied Environmental Science and Music. She has also completed advanced course work at UC Berkeley in Business Administration. In her spare time, Linda enjoys playing tympani and percussion with several orchestras and bands throughout the Bay area.
Janet Houser, Richmond District Branch Registrar. Janet began playing the violin at the age of six and has worked in the field of arts administration since 1976. She was Development Associate and Orchestra Librarian for the San Francisco Symphony; Operations Manager for the San Francisco Opera; and Office Manager for Mariedi Anders Artist Management. She has also worked as website manager for opportunityknocks.org and Executive Assistant to CEO and CFO Commonwealth Club of California. Janet holds a Bachelor of Music in Music History and Literature from SFSU and has performed with the Villa Sinfonia and the SF Sinfonietta Orchestra. Janet is a San Francisco native and has lived in the Richmond District all of her life. She is also a faithful Giants fan.
Suzanne Korey, Mission District Branch Associate Registrar. Suzanne Korey made a career as a printing press operator, faculty in Graphic Communications and Administrator at City College of San Francisco for many years. She returned to studying piano at the Community Music Center with Lauren Cony about five years ago, adding ensemble classes at the Richmond Center three years ago. Last year Ms Korey produced the Keyboard Marathon for the first time and will produce 2016’s Marathon as well. This past fall Ms Korey was hired in a part time capacity to work as an assistant registrar at Capp Street. Studying music at CMC has been a life changing event in the most positive way, and being part of this community of music makers continues to be an inspiration and focus of her life.
Anne C. Mitchell, Marketing Assistant and Volunteer Coordinator. Anne has been working and performing in the Mission District arts community since 2002. As a musician she has shared the stage with the indie great Ani DiFranco, and has collaborated extensively with critically acclaimed poet Judy Grahn. With an interest in musical performance that goes beyond the stage, Anne has worked in an organizational capacity for Eth-Noh-Tec storytelling group, ODC Theater, Nusku Arts in teaching, programs, box office management, marketing, and event coordination. She found her way to CMC is 2011 like so many through her love of studying music and composition. She holds an MFA in Songwriting and Vocal Technique from New College of California and a BA in Cultural Arts from the Evergreen State College. Her music can be found at annecarol.com.
Tania Morales, Mission District Branch Registrar. Tania earned a degree in computer and technology in Nicaragua. While going to school, she also worked as a music teacher who travelled to poor neighborhoods in Nicaragua to teach recorder. This lead to an opportunity for her to become the Office Administrator of a non-profit music school called Musica en los Barrios for five years. In 2005, she moved to San Francisco and began working at CMC, where she feels at home. Tania continues her computer studies at City College.
David Reffkin, Associate Program Director. David’s musical career connects performance, education, research, journalism, and administration. His first San Francisco engagement was in 1978 as the concertmaster of the CMC Orchestra, and he has worked with many diverse local groups. He is active as a seminar speaker, editor, consultant, columnist, recording engineer, festival producer, and director of The American Ragtime Ensemble. He was a KUSF radio producer for 30 years and a curator for the SF Performing Arts Library and Museum. He received the Leonard Bernstein, Joseph Spaziano, and Scott Joplin awards, and the Mayor’s Certificate of Honor for service to San Francisco. Among his extended engagements as a violinist, David led a trio (12 years) at the Westin St. Francis Hotel, and a string quartet (9 years) in San Mateo County school demonstration programs. He was a longtime member of the Lamplighters Orchestra, and a founding member of both San Francisco Chamber Players and The Peter Mintun Orchestra. Since 1990, he has been performing with the Divertimento Dance Orchestra. David engages his non-music neurons with astrophysics, acrostics composition, and “Fortune Art” creations for Friends of SF Public Library. He is a graduate of the New England Conservatory of Music.
Elenka Refsell, Development Coordinator. Elenka started learning to read music at age four and hasn’t looked back since. Before coming to CMC, she worked as the Registrar and Donor Services Manager at the Piedmont East Bay Children’s Choir and the Development Associate at the Shanti Project. A singer and voice teacher, Elenka has sung with a number of prestigious Bay Area ensembles and opera choruses, including Volti, the International Orange Chorale, West Edge Opera, and Festival Opera. In 2011 she was pleased to premiere the soprano role in Andrew Pascoe’s God: The Opera. A transplant from the Boston Area, Elenka is happy to call the Bay Area home.
Sylvia Sherman, Program Director. Sylvia brings more than twenty-five years of experience with non-profit and philanthropic organizations to Community Music Center. These include the San Francisco Art Commission, Oakland School for the Arts, and various community-based and philanthropic groups. She worked for fourteen years as Director of Development and Special Projects at La Peña Cultural Center, developing long-range strategic plans, institutional and individual donor fundraising, special program initiatives, coordinating La Peña’s artist-in-residence program; producing new work, concerts of international artists, and multi-disciplinary program series. Sylvia is an alumna of community-based arts education programs, playing percussion and bass, currently performing with Latin Jazz group, Survival Groove.
Wayne Vitale, Grant Writer. Wayne is a composer and educator who learned fundraising through many years of creative projects focused on the music of Bali, Indonesia. He has studied and collaborated with many of Bali’s greatest musicians, extensively documenting their work, and leading myriad projects bringing them together with diverse artists and audiences. He is a founding member and past director of Gamelan Sekar Jaya, a Bay Area company of sixty musicians and dancers with an unparalleled reputation for its cross-cultural work. He is also a pianist (with an audience limited to one person, himself) and piano tuner, member of a new music ensemble, the Lightbulb Ensemble, and owner of an independent record label, Vital Records.
Denise Wells, Director of Finance and Administration, has held high level finance positions for non-profit organizations for over 20 years and is a CPA with an MBA from Golden Gate University. Denise comes to us from First Place for Youth where she was Vice President of Administration and Finance.
Board of Directors
Patricia Taylor Lee, President
Pianist Patricia Taylor Lee is Professor and Chair Emerita of the Music Department
of San Francisco State University and Artistic Director of the Virginia Waring
International Piano Competition in Palm Desert, CA. She has also served on the
faculties of the University of California, Davis and West Chester University in
Pennsylvania and for ten years was the official pianist of the Sacramento Symphony.
Dr. Lee earned a BA at Mills College and graduate degrees at Yale and Temple
Universities. She is a trustee of the Ross McKee Foundation and a past trustee of
Mills College, the Women’s Philharmonic, Friends of Chamber Music, the Performing
Arts Library and Museum, and the Sacramento Symphony.
Catharine L. Kalin, Vice President
Currently Vice President of the CMC Board of Directors and chair of the personnel committee, Catharine Kalin is a past board president and has served on the board for almost 20 years. She is director of operations at the Ploughshares Fund, a public foundation investing in peace and security worldwide. She was a docent at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art for 18 years and served as Docent Council president.
Barbara Kosnar, Vice President
Barbara Kosnar retired from her position as a financial executive at Union Bank in 2011. She has an MBA from Golden Gate University and an undergraduate degree in Music Education from San Francisco State University. Barbara served on the Board of Directors of the Union Bank Foundation and of Audubon Canyon Ranch, and was a member of the Audit Committee of the ClimateWorks Foundation. An avid amateur pianist, she studied for many years at CMC and is now playing an instrumental role in CMC fundraising.
Paul Sussman, Treasurer
Paul Sussman is Chief Financial Officer of the Tenderloin Neighborhood Development Corporation (TNDC). He was the founding president of the Northern California Community Loan Fund, and has served as a consultant to nonprofit organizations, lenders and foundations. Paul currently serves on the Board of Directors CompassPoint Nonprofit Services, the North of Market Neighborhood Improvement Corporation and the Bothin Foundation. Paul is a former trumpeter and his two children and wife have been CMC students.
Tim Eischens, Secretary
Tim Eischens is a baritone and an accompanist. He earned his music degree from Minnesota State University – Moorhead, The Mozarteum Conservatory, and The University of Salzburg, Austria. He has sung with the San Francisco Lyric Opera, Urban Opera, Renaissance Voices, Choral Society, Bach Chorus and has performed recitals at CMC. He regularly accompanies singers around the Bay Area and studies voice with soprano, Susan Gundunas. Tim is also the Executive Assistant to the Chief Technology Officer at Autodesk, Inc. Autodesk is a world leader in 3D design software for manufacturing, building, construction, engineering, and entertainment.
Katherine L. Aizawa is an attorney with Foley & Lardner LLP, an international law firm with 18 offices throughout the United States and offices in Brussels, Shanghai and Tokyo. She practices employee benefits law, helping employers provide medical, retirement and executive compensation benefits to employees. Kathy learned about the CMC’s good work through a friend and former CMC board member and she is confident that her piano lessons helped her survive her teenage years.
Amy Cunningham Atkinson is a writer and producer of broadcast journalism, most recently as the Producer in Afghanistan for Girl Rising, a film and global campaign about the transformative power of education for girls in the developing world. Earlier in her career, Amy was a Producer for CBS News/60 Minutes where her award-winning work for Ed Bradley included a broad range of domestic and international stories. Prior to 60 Minutes, she worked at ABC News/Nightline as a researcher for anchor Ted Koppel, then as an Associate Producer/Booker. Amy is a graduate of Yale University and Stanford University’s broadcast journalism program. She has served on a number of non-profit education boards, including Grotan School and the Hamlin School, and is a trustee of the British charity Afghan Connection and SF-based Narrative Magazine.
Lucia Bogatay has practiced architecture since 1969. She earned a degree in History of Art from Wellesley College and her Master of Architecture degree from the Harvard Graduate School of Design. Lucia currently serves as co-chair of the architecture and archaeology committee and preservation member of the board of the Presidio Historical Association. She helped supervise the 1983 renovation of CMC’s Mission District Branch and subsequently joined the board. Lucia took piano lessons at the CMC for a dozen years, and still enjoys playing the piano.
Katherine Bukstein holds a Masters of Music in Viola Performance from San Francisco State University. She has taught music privately and in the public schools. From 2004 to the present, she has served on the board of San Francisco Friends of Chamber Music and served as its president from 2009 – 2016. She currently serves on the Artistic Committee of the Peninsula Symphony and the Artistic and Education Committees of Music at Kohl Mansion. She also serves on the Board of Directors of the Mervyn L. Brenner Foundation. Katherine is an avid chamber musician and also performs with the Peninsula Symphony.
Dave Donohue is Vice President of Marketing Communications at Unified, an award-winning marketing and analytics technology company. Dave joined Unified from The OutCast Agency, where he served as vice president of media strategy and supplied social media and public relations counsel to clients including EMC, Facebook, VMware, Salesforce.com, and TurboTax. Prior to OutCast, Dave oversaw corporate communications and marketing for Scale Eight, an enterprise storage technology company acquired by Intel. He began his technology career in media relations and marketing roles at GCI Group and The Strategis Group. Dave received a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from The University of Vermont.
Greg Eden is Vice President of Brand and Communications at Autodesk, a provider of design, engineering and entertainment software. Based in San Francisco, he leads a global team of more than 75 marketing professionals, story tellers and creative artists focused on enhancing the company’s reputation and communicating with its many stakeholders around the world. Eden’s expertise in brand management and global communications is built on nearly two decades of related experience. Prior to joining Autodesk in 2010, Eden directed PR and communications organizations for technology leaders EMC, VMware and Dell. Eden holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Richmond and a master’s degree in marketing communications from Emerson College.
Geoffrey Gallegos is the Music Director and Conductor of the Kensington Symphony Orchestra, the Golden Gate Opera, and the Golden Gate Philharmonic Youth Orchestra. From 2003 to 2008, Maestro Gallegos served as Assistant Conductor of the Peninsula Symphony Orchestra of Northern California. He has participated in the Artist in Residence program at the School of the Arts in San Francisco since 2001 and was Instrumental Music Liaison at The Nueva School in Hillsborough from 2007 – 2010. As a child, Geoffrey studied trumpet at CMC.
Ron Gallman is the San Francisco Symphony’s Director of Education and Youth Orchestra. He oversees the Symphony’s education programs, which serve the spectrum of Bay Area communities and have been described as national models in educational and programming excellence. Gallman gives lectures and writes program notes for the SFS and arts organizations across the country. He has served on national and state arts panels, participated as a presenter in arts conferences nationwide, and serves on boards and committees of local, state, and national arts organizations.
Duncan Haberly is a serial Internet entrepreneur, author, and recovering lawyer. He has been fortunate to be a part of the success of Military.com, Tagged.com, and Instructables.com. After the sale of his own company, Objective Loyalty, Duncan went back to college to study music and is currently a full-time student at SF State. He firmly credits CMC with giving him the core music skills that enabled his collegiate return. Duncan has a J.D. from the University of Virginia and is a veteran of U.S. Army Military Intelligence.
Terri Kwiatek worked for Bank of America in leasing and equipment finance from 1978 to 2001. Prior to Bank of America, she worked for Continental Bank in commercial lending and economic research. Terri is on the Board of the Cancer Prevention Institute of California and is on the finance committee of the Headlands Center for the Arts. She knows nothing about music but loves the Community Music Center.
Cathi Kwon is a business and product designer specializing in new product development as well as an amateur violinist and CMC student. She currently leads Adobe’s Experience Design Studio team, an internal incubator that employs the scientific method, rapid prototyping, and design thinking to create new tools for Adobe. Earning her BA in Economics from Wellesley College, she took the rest of her credits in the art department and later received an MBA from Stanford. Through her experiences, she has become a firm believer in the transformative potential of arts education, and her past volunteer work includes mentoring with First Exposures and BayKids. She enjoys impromptu dance parties, karaoke, and live music.
Richard Moss is an environmental attorney. He is a San Francisco native and nephew of Lev and Frances Shorr. Richard has had a life-long interest in music and is a devotee of chamber music and music of the 20th century. As a child, he came to hear concerts at Community Music Center.
Edie Plotinsky teaches art to elderly people with vision and hearing impairments who attend adult day health centers in San Francisco. She holds degrees in occupational therapy, fine arts, and gerontology. Previously she served on the board of the Young Musicians program in Berkeley. She grew up in a family of skilled amateur musicians. She studies piano with Joan Nagano and plays in a chamber music trio.
Paisley Schade is a Creative Director of Verbal Branding at Landor Associates. She has spent her career as a writer in branding and advertising, but music has never been far from her mind. Paisley has played the harp since childhood and combined her love of language and music for her MA in Ethnomusicolinguistics at NYU. She also has a degree in psychology from Scripps College, where she studied the role of music in child development.
David Swartz is a Senior Vice President at Merrill Lynch. David previously served on the Board of Directors of Raphael House, a non-profit organization that provides services for homeless families in San Francisco. He also served for many years on the UCSF Foundation Investment Committee and was a Board member of the Sarasota Opera. David graduated from the University of Florida where he received his B.S. degree in Journalism and his MBA. As an undergraduate student, David played percussion in the University’s symphonic and marching bands. He currently is a drummer in a local rock cover band.
Jessica Wan is a lyric soprano who sings opera, lieder, musical theatre, and more. She started her musical journey at an early age on piano, violin, and oboe. Jessica has a BA in Music and BS in Product Design from Stanford and an MBA from the Haas School of Business at UC Berkeley. She currently studies voice with Susan Gundunas. Jessica is Director of Marketing at Smule, a social music app developer that connects the world through music through apps like Magic Piano and Sing! Karaoke.
Diana Whitehead spent 28 years of her career as a telecommunications manager, retiring as CIO of SBC (now ATT). She was also an executive of an internet start-up and a telecommunications and information technology consultant. She is chair-elect of the Institute On Aging and the 2nd Vice President of the Salesian Boys and Girls Club. Diana enjoyed her music lessons as a child and has been a season ticket holder for the SF Symphony for over 30 years.
Maya Enriquez- CMC Alumna
Ruth Felt – President, SF Performances
David M. Lawrence
Fritz Maytag – Businessman
Lise Deschamps Ostwald – Pianist
Jane Roos Le Roux – Retired Physician, Community Volunteer
Tregar Otton, Chair
Mission Advisory Council
Jennie Rodriguez – Executive Director, Mission Cultural Center for Latino Arts
Jose Carrasco – Youth Services Manager, Good Samaritan Family Resource Center
Chelis Lopez – Host of radio shows “Andanzas” and “Pajaro Latino-Americano” on KPOO 89.5 fm